Bihar floods: Angry villagers rough up two parliamentarians for no relief
FLOODS HAVE AFFECTED A POPULATION OF ABOUT 26 LAKH PEOPLE SETTLED IN 77 BLOCKS OF 12 DISTRICTS
PATNA: Protesting villagers roughed up two ruling party parliamentarians in BIhar and forced them to leave their villages, angry at lack of flood relief and showing negligence towards their plight.
According to an official report, currently around 26 lakh (2-. Million) population settled in 12 districts of Bihar are badly affected by floods, making villagers’ life miserable barely a month after these districts were reeling under severe heat waves.
The first incident was reported from northern Bihar’s Madhubani district where the Janata Dal United (JD-U) parliamentarian Ram Preet Mandal was meted out shabby treatment by the angry flood victims.
The incident took place when the parliamentarian had gone to Naruar village under his constituency to take stock of flood situation. Mandal represents Jhanjharpur seat in Lok Sabha.
Local TV grabs showed the angry flood victims hurling abuses at the parliamentarian, shoving him aside and running menacingly towards the MP with bamboo sticks.
His security guards had a really tough time pacifying the angry mob and save the parliamentarian from the people’s wrath. Footages also showed the parliamentarian hiding himself behind a wall of his supporters and security guards and looking helpless.
Madhubani bordering Nepal is one of the few districts which is facing worst floods this year, inundating thousands of homes, destroying food stuffs stored in homes and forcing the hapless villagers flee their homes for safety.
Almost similar incident took place in Araria district where the angry flood victims mobbed the local Bharitya Janata Party (BJP) parliamentarian Pradeep Singh and shabbily treated him for turning a blind eye towards their plight.
The incident took place when he had gone to meet flood victims in Forbesganj block of his constituency but was caught by a mob protesting for lack of flood relief.
Here too the parliamentarian had a narrow escape as the protesting flood victims were armed with bamboo sticks and had he not handled the situation tactfully, the situation indeed would have gone out of control.
“What was the point in voting for you when you had been ignoring us at this critical time?” asked the angry flood victims. They also forced the parliamentarian to accompany them and see the pitiable condition of poor villagers living in the flooded homes and battling hard for survival for want of food.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar in the meanwhile conducted aerial survey of the flooded areas for the second consecutive day on Monday. On Sunday he had conducted aerial survey of north Bihar districts but on Monday he reviewed the flood situation in eastern Bihar districts and ordered for relief.
However, the Bihar opposition termed the continuing aerial survey by the chief minister as a mere eyewash.
“Several people were washed away by the swirling floodwaters and many were battling floods but the chief minister is still conducting aerial survey. This is a cruel joke with the poor villagers,” Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader and former chief minister Rabri Devi alleged. She suggested the chief minister to travel by road to understand the gravity of the situation.
She alleged large-scale irregularities in use of funds meant for constructing embankments. “Substandard materials have been used by the contractors and engineers in connivance with the government officials as a result of which the rivers’ embankments are getting breached more often,” she alleged.
A report released by Central Flood Control Room on Monday said several river embankments were facing pressures due to overflow of waters adding the officials were keeping a close vigil on the situation. The report added works are underway to repair the broken embankment and plug the holes.
According to an official report, 13 teams of National Disaster Response Force and State Disaster Response Fund have been deployed to carry out rescue and relief operations. The authorities have also opened 152 relief camps, housing 45,053 people, and 251 community kitchens in the flood-hit areas.